This information is for families considering moving to Cornwall. It is for those with a child or young person in the family who has an Education, Health and Care plan (EHC plan).
The Statutory SEN Service has the same responsibilities for any child or young person aged 0-25 moving into Cornwall. They must have an EHC plan to get support.
Education provision available in Cornwall
Please bear in mind:
- All local authorities have a different mix of types of school. This means you may find Cornwall doesn't have the type of school your child currently attends.
- Cornwall is a rural county. Sometimes children and young people will have to travel to attend school.
- Most children/young people with EHC plans go to mainstream settings. This means schools or colleges. While they are there, we arrange appropriate extra support, to meet the needs identified in their EHC plan.
- A small number of primary and secondary schools have Area Resource Bases (ARBs). These are for children with complex and significant needs.
- There are also four special schools in Cornwall. Three cater for children/young people with severe learning difficulties. This includes complex needs. We have one school catering for children/young people with complex communication difficulties.
- All children and young people attending either ARBs or special schools have EHC plans. Places in ARBs and special schools are allocated by the Statutory SEN panel. Availability of these placements varies across each school year.
Request a school place
The Statutory SEN service arrange admission to Cornwall schools for children with EHC plans. Families do not need to make an application via the online admissions system. Please do not apply direct to schools.
If your child has an EHC plan and you are considering moving to Cornwall, it is helpful if you contact the Statutory SEN Service as early as possible. We can discuss your intended move and give advice. In some cases, you may decide that your child could stay at the school they are currently attending.
The Statutory SEN Service can liaise with your current local authority to request a copy of the current EHC plan. This is helpful to settle things smoothly for the child/young person. We will need you to prove your new address in Cornwall within eight weeks of the date of your move. British Armed Forces have to do this within twelve weeks.
What happens next?
We have to decide whether to adopt your child’s current EHC Plan. We may start a statutory reassessment of your child’s needs. In most cases, we adopt the current EHC plan. We have six weeks from when we become aware that a family has moved to tell them our decision.
If we adopt a child’s current EHC plan or a statement of SEN, we have to try to match the provision as closely as possible. It is not always possible to match it exactly. Schools and availability of school places vary from authority to authority. The named Statutory SEN casework officer will discuss your available options.
Confirming a school place
We can begin the process but we cannot confirm a school place until a family arrives in Cornwall. By law, we have to allow time to consult the governing body of the school the family wishes their child or young person to attend. We will always try to ensure that the child or young person can start an educational setting as quickly as possible. You must prepare that your child/young person cannot always start as soon as you move.
If a family moves into Cornwall, the first step they can take for their young person’s health is to register with a GP. This will be the first step in accessing most health services in the county.
It is still important that we know about the move as early as possible so we can make sure you know what your options are. We will need the new address and contact details. This is so we can make sure we send any information about a child/young person’s EHC plan to the correct address.
Young people may not be entitled to transport if the school named in their EHC plan is no longer the nearest. Your Statutory SEN casework officer will be happy to discuss your available options.
When a family moves out of Cornwall, the responsibility for the child or young person’s EHC plan transfers to the new authority. Parents /carers will need to contact the new authority as soon as they can. Not all authorities work in the same way. The transfer process in the new authority may be different to Cornwall. However, the new authority will still have 8 weeks to tell you their decision about your child / young person’s current EHC plan.
It is helpful for us to know in advance if a family is leaving Cornwall. We can ensure the child/young person’s paperwork is ready to send to the new local authority on time. This means it is more likely the child/young person can start school quickly.
If a family moves out of Cornwall, the first thing they should do is register with a local GP in the new area. The new area should also have a Local Offer. This will list the health services and sources of support for families of young people with SEND.
Most issues can be resolved online, it's the quickest and most convenient way to get help.